Dame Emma Thompson is to star in Netflix's 'Matilda' adaptation.

The 61-year-old actress has signed up to play sadistic headmistress Miss Trunchbull in the new take on Roald Dahl's novel with newcomer Alisha Weir playing the titular character.

The pair have joined Lashana Lynch, who will portray Matilda's kindly teacher Miss Honey in the upcoming project – which is based on the 2010 stage production 'Matilda the Musical'.

Dahl's novel follows gifted five-year-old Matilda, whose gift for telekinesis helps her to overcome bullying from parents, classmates and the terrifying Miss Trunchbull.

Matthew Warchus – who directed the musical – is helming the film with original playwright Dennis Kelly adapting the screenplay featuring music and lyrics from Tim Minchin.

Warchus said: "'Matilda' will be an imaginative and fresh retelling of the award-winning musical, 'Matilda', featuring talented young newcomers, alongside established stars.

"I look forward to introducing this beloved and powerful story to a new generation of fans around the world."

The story was previously adapted for the big screen in 1996, with Danny Devito both starring and directing and Mara Wilson playing the lead role.

Emma has also boarded the new comedy 'Good Luck to You, Leo Grande'.

She will play the role of Nancy Stokes, a 55-year-old widow who yearns for sex and human connection that she never got in a stable but stale marriage. She devises a plan and hires 'sex therapist' Leo Grande, a man in his 20s, for a night of bliss.

The movie is being directed by Sophie Hyde with a script penned by comic Katy Brand.

Sophie said: "I'm thrilled to be working with the tremendously funny and heartbreakingly honest Emma Thompson to explore intimacy and desire, and to put on a screen a relationship that feels unexpected and delightful.

"At a time when our need for each other is so vividly present, it will be a delight to create and show this connection between two people, which is funny, sexy and moving."